The first ever transgender beauty pageant has taken place in Israel.
The ‘Miss Trans Israel’ pageant took place in Tel Aviv this week.
Around thirty trans women took part in the pageant, organised by Israela Stephanie Lev.
Lev said living as a trans woman in Israel had been “terrible” in the past, but that now things were improving.
“Definitely we are achieving, enlightening the people to accept and empower transsexuals,” she told the Associated Press.
Contestants such as Abu Hanna, a 21-year-old whose family is Catholic Arab took part in the pageant.
She said her family is supportive of her, and that she can sing, dance and play the trumpet.
“I have something to give the people”, Hanna said, going on to say “We are normal people. This is normal.”
A pageant final will take place in May, and the winner is to represent Israel at the Miss Trans Star international pageant.
The Trans Star pageant will take place this summer in Spain.
Campaigners earlier this year criticised a transgender beauty pageant which offers the winner gender reassignment surgery.
The Miss Gay and Ms Transsexual Australia 2016 pageant was branded “irresponsible” by campaigners.
A finalist in the Miss Galaxy beauty pageant contest also in January spoke out – to claim she was disqualified for being trans.
29-year-old Jossy Yendall says she was elated to find out that she had made it through to the final of the UK competition.
However, she told ITV she was shocked to be told by organisers that she had been dropped from the contest because she’s not ‘biologically’ female.
The winner of the Miss Transgender UK pageant was last month stripped of her crown for not being “full-time” transgender, the organiser has claimed.
The pageant launched for the first time last year – but attracted controversy for offering all-expenses-paid gender reassignment surgery in India as a ‘prize’.
Scottish trans woman Jai Dara Latto was initially named the winner of the contest – but organiser Rachael Bailey hit out at her this week, amid coverage of Ms Latto going on a charity hike.